Waking Life

(Photo by Warner Bros./Fox/Rogue/courtesy Everett Collection)

20 Best Movies To Watch High

If you want to watch something funny, mind-blowing or mind-bending to pair with the altered state you find yourself in, look no further than our 20 best movies to watch while high. Consider comedies that commit to their insane internal zaniness, like Step Brothers, Airplane!, and Monty Python. There are movies that dazzle with their visuals (The Fall, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Spirited Away), with others also kicking the audio component into overdrive (Pink Floyd – The Wall, Tron Legacy).

Let science-fiction become the theater of the mind, as Inception, 2001: A Space Odyssey, and The Matrix knock your perspectives around. And some movies — like Pulp Fiction, Fight Club, and Shaun of the Dead — will lock you to your couch based on pure elan and style. After that, we sorted the movies by Tomatometer, from lowest to highest.

Get ready for some unforgettable experiences with the 20 best movies to watch while high! (And don’t forget to check out the 25 essential stoner movies.)

#20

Tron: Legacy (2010)
50%

#20
Adjusted Score: 59691%
Critics Consensus: Tron Legacy boasts dazzling visuals, but its human characters and story get lost amidst its state-of-the-art production design.
Synopsis: Sam (Garrett Hedlund), the son of famous video-game developer Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges), has been haunted for a long time... [More]
Directed By: Joseph Kosinski

#19

Step Brothers (2008)
55%

#19
Adjusted Score: 63191%
Critics Consensus: Step Brothers indulges in a cheerfully relentless immaturity that will quickly turn off viewers unamused by Ferrell and Reilly -- and delight those who find their antics hilarious.
Synopsis: Brennan Huff (Will Ferrell) and Dale Doback (John C. Reilly) have one thing in common: they are both lazy, unemployed... [More]
Directed By: Adam McKay

#18

The Fall (2006)
62%

#18
Adjusted Score: 65783%
Critics Consensus: More visually elaborate than the fragmented story can sometimes support, The Fall walks the line between labor of love and filmmaker self-indulgence.
Synopsis: A bedridden patient (Lee Pace) captivates a hospitalized girl (Catinca Untaru) with a fantastic tale involving heroes, mystics and villains... [More]
Directed By: Tarsem

#17
#17
Adjusted Score: 71740%
Critics Consensus: Pink Floyd's expression of generational angst is given striking visual form The Wall, although this ambitious feature's narrative struggles to marry its provocative images and psychedelic soundtrack into a compelling whole.
Synopsis: In this visual riff on Pink Floyd's album "The Wall," successful but drugged-out musician Pink (Bob Geldof) is looking back... [More]
Directed By: Alan Parker

#16
#16
Adjusted Score: 74049%
Critics Consensus: Visually inventive and gleefully over the top, Luc Besson's The Fifth Element is a fantastic piece of pop sci-fi that never takes itself too seriously.
Synopsis: In the 23rd century, a New York City cabbie, Korben Dallas (Bruce Willis), finds the fate of the world in... [More]
Directed By: Luc Besson

#15

Fight Club (1999)
79%

#15
Adjusted Score: 86255%
Critics Consensus: Solid acting, amazing direction, and elaborate production design make Fight Club a wild ride.
Synopsis: A depressed man (Edward Norton) suffering from insomnia meets a strange soap salesman named Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) and soon... [More]
Directed By: David Fincher

#14

Waking Life (2001)
81%

#14
Adjusted Score: 85505%
Critics Consensus: Waking Life's inventive animated aesthetic adds a distinctive visual component to a film that could easily have rested on its smart screenplay and talented ensemble cast.
Synopsis: Transcending the boundaries of technology and imagination, "Waking Life" is a revolutionary breakthrough in film animation. In "Waking Life," Wiley... [More]
Directed By: Richard Linklater

#13

Tropic Thunder (2008)
82%

#13
Adjusted Score: 91401%
Critics Consensus: With biting satire, plenty of subversive humor, and an unforgettable turn by Robert Downey, Jr., Tropic Thunder is a triumphant late Summer comedy.
Synopsis: Tugg Speedman (Ben Stiller), pampered action superstar, sets out for Southeast Asia to take part in the biggest, most-expensive war... [More]
Directed By: Ben Stiller

#12
#12
Adjusted Score: 84660%
Critics Consensus: A visual treat rich in symbolism, The Holy Mountain adds another defiantly idiosyncratic chapter to Jodorowsky's thoroughly unique filmography.
Synopsis: A Mexican master (Alexandro Jodorowsky) leads a Christ figure (Horacio Salinas) and other disciples to a mountain of immortal wise... [More]
Directed By: Alexandro Jodorowsky

#11

21 Jump Street (2012)
85%

#11
Adjusted Score: 94467%
Critics Consensus: A smart, affectionate satire of '80s nostalgia and teen movie tropes, 21 Jump Street offers rowdy mainstream comedy with a surprisingly satisfying bite.
Synopsis: When cops Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum) join the secret Jump Street unit, they use their youthful appearances... [More]

#10

Inception (2010)
87%

#10
Adjusted Score: 103254%
Critics Consensus: Smart, innovative, and thrilling, Inception is that rare summer blockbuster that succeeds viscerally as well as intellectually.
Synopsis: Dom Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) is a thief with the rare ability to enter people's dreams and steal their secrets from... [More]
Directed By: Christopher Nolan

#9

The Matrix (1999)
88%

#9
Adjusted Score: 95175%
Critics Consensus: Thanks to the Wachowskis' imaginative vision, The Matrix is a smartly crafted combination of spectacular action and groundbreaking special effects.
Synopsis: Neo (Keanu Reeves) believes that Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne), an elusive figure considered to be the most dangerous man alive, can... [More]

#8

Fantastic Planet (1973)
91%

#8
Adjusted Score: 92911%
Critics Consensus: Fantastic Planet is an animated epic that is by turns surreal and lovely, fantastic and graceful.
Synopsis: This animated tale follows the relationship between the small human-like Oms and their much larger blue-skinned oppressors, the Draags, who... [More]
Directed By: René Laloux

#7

Pulp Fiction (1994)
92%

#7
Adjusted Score: 98832%
Critics Consensus: One of the most influential films of the 1990s, Pulp Fiction is a delirious post-modern mix of neo-noir thrills, pitch-black humor, and pop-culture touchstones.
Synopsis: Vincent Vega (John Travolta) and Jules Winnfield (Samuel L. Jackson) are hitmen with a penchant for philosophical discussions. In this... [More]
Directed By: Quentin Tarantino

#6
#6
Adjusted Score: 106716%
Critics Consensus: One of the most influential of all sci-fi films -- and one of the most controversial -- Stanley Kubrick's 2001 is a delicate, poetic meditation on the ingenuity -- and folly -- of mankind.
Synopsis: An imposing black structure provides a connection between the past and the future in this enigmatic adaptation of a short... [More]
Directed By: Stanley Kubrick

#5
#5
Adjusted Score: 100666%
Critics Consensus: Shaun of the Dead cleverly balances scares and witty satire, making for a bloody good zombie movie with loads of wit.
Synopsis: Shaun (Simon Pegg) is a 30-something loser with a dull, easy existence. When he's not working at the electronics store,... [More]
Directed By: Edgar Wright

#4
#4
Adjusted Score: 104697%
Critics Consensus: Typically stylish but deceptively thoughtful, The Grand Budapest Hotel finds Wes Anderson once again using ornate visual environments to explore deeply emotional ideas.
Synopsis: In the 1930s, the Grand Budapest Hotel is a popular European ski resort, presided over by concierge Gustave H. (Ralph... [More]
Directed By: Wes Anderson

#3

Airplane! (1980)
97%

#3
Adjusted Score: 103487%
Critics Consensus: Though unabashedly juvenile and silly, Airplane! is nevertheless an uproarious spoof comedy full of quotable lines and slapstick gags that endure to this day.
Synopsis: This spoof comedy takes shots at the slew of disaster movies that were released in the 70s. When the passengers... [More]

#2
Adjusted Score: 105786%
Critics Consensus: A cult classic as gut-bustingly hilarious as it is blithely ridiculous, Monty Python and the Holy Grail has lost none of its exceedingly silly charm.
Synopsis: A comedic send-up of the grim circumstances of the Middle Ages as told through the story of King Arthur and... [More]
Directed By: Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones

#1

Spirited Away (2001)
97%

#1
Adjusted Score: 103390%
Critics Consensus: Spirited Away is a dazzling, enchanting, and gorgeously drawn fairy tale that will leave viewers a little more curious and fascinated by the world around them.
Synopsis: 10-year-old Chihiro (Daveigh Chase) moves with her parents to a new home in the Japanese countryside. After taking a wrong... [More]
Directed By: Hayao Miyazaki, Kirk Wise

Moonrise Kingdom

(Photo by © Focus Features)

105 Great Movies to Watch Alone

For some, staying home right now can mean curling up with a loved one on the couch for a date-night flick or gathering the whole family together for movie night. For many others, it can mean flying solo – long days and nights of streaming by yourself. We’re here to help with some movie suggestions we think are tailor-made for that latter experience.

Just like going to the movie theater alone can be a singularly joyous “treat yo self” excursion, solo home-viewing can be a great experience too – if you choose the right film. There are movies out there that actually benefit from being watched alone: It might be that they require a level of concentration and focus that distracting friends and loved ones just won’t allow you, or that the maximum scare factor is best felt when you are completely isolated – just like the babysitter being stalked on screen. It might just be that the movie has the kind of awkward/titillating sexy bits that make watching it with a first date – or, let’s say, mom – not exactly ideal. Watch it alone – no judgment, no nervous giggles.

To help those solo-fliers get through the next little while, the RT team pulled together a list of movies perfect for watching alone for all of those reasons – and a bunch that are just guaranteed to put you in an awesome mood the moment they start. Which might be the best reason of all.

What’s your favorite movie to watch by yourself? Let us know in the comments.
Click on each movie’s title to find out more, including where to stream, rent, or buy.  


BECAUSE THE MOVIE REQUIRES YOUR ABSOLUTE CONCENTRATION…

#13

Memento (2000)
93%

#13
Adjusted Score: 100064%
Critics Consensus: Christopher Nolan skillfully guides the audience through Memento's fractured narrative, seeping his film in existential dread.
Synopsis: Leonard (Guy Pearce) is tracking down the man who raped and murdered his wife. The difficulty, however, of locating his... [More]
Directed By: Christopher Nolan

#12
#12
Adjusted Score: 75875%
Critics Consensus: Charlie Kaufman's ambitious directorial debut occasionally strains to connect, but ultimately provides fascinating insight into a writer's mind.
Synopsis: Life is looking pretty bleak for theater director Caden Cotard (Philip Seymour Hoffman). His wife and daughter have left him,... [More]
Directed By: Charlie Kaufman

#11

The Irishman (2019)
95%

#11
Adjusted Score: 123934%
Critics Consensus: An epic gangster drama that earns its extended runtime, The Irishman finds Martin Scorsese revisiting familiar themes to poignant, funny, and profound effect.
Synopsis: In the 1950s, truck driver Frank Sheeran gets involved with Russell Bufalino and his Pennsylvania crime family. As Sheeran climbs... [More]
Directed By: Martin Scorsese

#10
Adjusted Score: 102303%
Critics Consensus: Propelled by Charlie Kaufman's smart, imaginative script and Michel Gondry's equally daring directorial touch, Eternal Sunshine is a twisty yet heartfelt look at relationships and heartache.
Synopsis: After a painful breakup, Clementine (Kate Winslet) undergoes a procedure to erase memories of her former boyfriend Joel (Jim Carrey)... [More]
Directed By: Michel Gondry

#9

Annihilation (2018)
88%

#9
Adjusted Score: 108010%
Critics Consensus: Annihilation backs up its sci-fi visual wonders and visceral genre thrills with an impressively ambitious -- and surprisingly strange -- exploration of challenging themes that should leave audiences pondering long after the end credits roll.
Synopsis: Lena, a biologist and former soldier, joins a mission to uncover what happened to her husband inside Area X --... [More]
Directed By: Alex Garland

#8

Magnolia (1999)
83%

#8
Adjusted Score: 89667%
Critics Consensus: Magnolia is an ambitious, lengthy work that ultimately succeeds due to interesting stories and excellent ensemble performances.
Synopsis: On one random day in the San Fernando Valley, a dying father, a young wife, a male caretaker, a famous... [More]
Directed By: Paul Thomas Anderson

#7

12 Monkeys (1995)
89%

#7
Adjusted Score: 93669%
Critics Consensus: The plot's a bit of a jumble, but excellent performances and mind-blowing plot twists make 12 Monkeys a kooky, effective experience.
Synopsis: Traveling back in time isn't simple, as James Cole (Bruce Willis) learns the hard way. Imprisoned in the 2030s, James... [More]
Directed By: Terry Gilliam

#6

Zodiac (2007)
89%

#6
Adjusted Score: 100390%
Critics Consensus: A quiet, dialogue-driven thriller that delivers with scene after scene of gut-wrenching anxiety. David Fincher also spends more time illustrating nuances of his characters and recreating the mood of the '70s than he does on gory details of murder.
Synopsis: In the late 1960s and 1970s, fear grips the city of San Francisco as a serial killer called Zodiac stalks... [More]
Directed By: David Fincher

#5

Silence (2016)
83%

#5
Adjusted Score: 103529%
Critics Consensus: Silence ends Martin Scorsese's decades-long creative quest with a thoughtful, emotionally resonant look at spirituality and human nature that stands among the director's finest works.
Synopsis: Two 17th-century Portuguese missionaries, Father Sebastian Rodrigues (Andrew Garfield) and Father Francisco Garupe (Adam Driver), embark on a perilous journey... [More]
Directed By: Martin Scorsese

#4

The Deer Hunter (1978)
91%

#4
Adjusted Score: 99849%
Critics Consensus: Its greatness is blunted by its length and one-sided point of view, but the film's weaknesses are overpowered by Michael Cimino's sympathetic direction and a series of heartbreaking performances from Robert De Niro, Meryl Streep, and Christopher Walken.
Synopsis: In 1968, Michael (Robert De Niro), Nick (Christopher Walken) and Steven (John Savage), lifelong friends from a working-class Pennsylvania steel... [More]
Directed By: Michael Cimino

#3

Parasite (2019)
98%

#3
Adjusted Score: 127460%
Critics Consensus: An urgent, brilliantly layered look at timely social themes, Parasite finds writer-director Bong Joon Ho in near-total command of his craft.
Synopsis: Greed and class discrimination threaten the newly formed symbiotic relationship between the wealthy Park family and the destitute Kim clan.... [More]
Directed By: Bong Joon-ho

#2

The Master (2012)
84%

#2
Adjusted Score: 95453%
Critics Consensus: Smart and solidly engrossing, The Master extends Paul Thomas Anderson's winning streak of challenging films for serious audiences.
Synopsis: Freddie Quell (Joaquin Phoenix) is a troubled, boozy drifter struggling with the trauma of World War II and whatever inner... [More]
Directed By: Paul Thomas Anderson

#8

The Game (1997)
76%

#8
Adjusted Score: 79710%
Critics Consensus: The ending could use a little work but this is otherwise another sterling example of David Fincher's iron grip on atmosphere and storytelling.
Synopsis: Nicholas Van Orton (Michael Douglas) is a successful banker who keeps mostly to himself. When his estranged brother Conrad (Sean... [More]
Directed By: David Fincher

#1

Inherent Vice (2014)
73%

#1
Adjusted Score: 83386%
Critics Consensus: Inherent Vice may prove frustrating for viewers who demand absolute coherence, but it does justice to its acclaimed source material -- and should satisfy fans of director P.T. Anderson.
Synopsis: In a California beach community, private detective Larry "Doc" Sportello (Joaquin Phoenix) tends to work his cases through a smoky... [More]
Directed By: Paul Thomas Anderson

#1

Burning (2018)
95%

#1
Adjusted Score: 105592%
Critics Consensus: Burning patiently lures audiences into a slow-burning character study that ultimately rewards the viewer's patience -- and subverts many of their expectations.
Synopsis: Jong-soo runs into Hae-mi, a girl who once lived in his neighborhood, and she asks him to watch her cat... [More]
Directed By: Lee Chang-dong

#1

Vertigo (1958)
94%

#1
Adjusted Score: 105853%
Critics Consensus: An unpredictable scary thriller that doubles as a mournful meditation on love, loss, and human comfort.
Synopsis: Hitchcock's romantic story of obsession, manipulation and fear. A detective is forced to retire after his fear of heights causes... [More]
Directed By: Alfred Hitchcock

#1

The Tree of Life (2011)
84%

#1
Adjusted Score: 98301%
Critics Consensus: Terrence Malick's singularly deliberate style may prove unrewarding for some, but for patient viewers, Tree of Life is an emotional as well as visual treat.
Synopsis: In this highly philosophical film by acclaimed director Terrence Malick, young Jack (Hunter McCracken) is one of three brothers growing... [More]
Directed By: Terrence Malick

#1

The Prestige (2006)
76%

#1
Adjusted Score: 83673%
Critics Consensus: Full of twists and turns, The Prestige is a dazzling period piece that never stops challenging the audience.
Synopsis: An illusion gone horribly wrong pits two 19th-century magicians, Alfred Borden (Christian Bale) and Rupert Angier (Hugh Jackman), against each... [More]
Directed By: Christopher Nolan

#1

Under the Skin (2013)
84%

#1
Adjusted Score: 95071%
Critics Consensus: Its message may prove elusive for some, but with absorbing imagery and a mesmerizing performance from Scarlett Johansson, Under the Skin is a haunting viewing experience.
Synopsis: Disguising herself as a human female, an extraterrestrial (Scarlett Johansson) drives around Scotland and tries to lure unsuspecting men into... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Glazer

#1

Gattaca (1997)
83%

#1
Adjusted Score: 86115%
Critics Consensus: Intelligent and scientifically provocative, Gattaca is an absorbing sci fi drama that poses important interesting ethical questions about the nature of science.
Synopsis: Vincent Freeman (Ethan Hawke) has always fantasized about traveling into outer space, but is grounded by his status as a... [More]
Directed By: Andrew Niccol


BECAUSE THE MOVIE IS GONNA MAKE YOU UGLY CRY…

#13
#13
Adjusted Score: 84626%
Critics Consensus: Benigni's earnest charm, when not overstepping its bounds into the unnecessarily treacly, offers the possibility of hope in the face of unflinching horror.
Synopsis: A gentle Jewish-Italian waiter, Guido Orefice (Roberto Benigni), meets Dora (Nicoletta Braschi), a pretty schoolteacher, and wins her over with... [More]
Directed By: Roberto Benigni

#12

Pan's Labyrinth (2006)
95%

#12
Adjusted Score: 105720%
Critics Consensus: Pan's Labyrinth is Alice in Wonderland for grown-ups, with the horrors of both reality and fantasy blended together into an extraordinary, spellbinding fable.
Synopsis: In 1944 Spain young Ofelia (Ivana Baquero) and her ailing mother (Ariadna Gil) arrive at the post of her mother's... [More]
Directed By: Guillermo del Toro

#11

Beaches (1988)
40%

#11
Adjusted Score: 43072%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Hillary (Barbara Hershey) and CC (Bette Midler) meet as children vacationing in Atlantic City, N.J., and remain friends throughout the... [More]
Directed By: Garry Marshall

#10

Steel Magnolias (1989)
70%

#10
Adjusted Score: 71172%
Critics Consensus: Steel Magnolias has jokes and characters to spare, which makes it more dangerous (and effective) when it goes for the full melodrama by the end.
Synopsis: M'Lynn (Sally Field) is the mother of bride-to-be Shelby Eatenton (Julia Roberts), and as friend Truvy Jones (Dolly Parton) fixes... [More]
Directed By: Herbert Ross

#9

Stepmom (1998)
46%

#9
Adjusted Score: 50206%
Critics Consensus: Solid work from Julia Roberts and Susan Sarandon isn't enough to save Stepmom from a story whose manipulations dilute the effectiveness of a potentially affecting drama.
Synopsis: Three years after divorcing Jackie (Susan Sarandon), the mother of his children, Luke Harrison (Ed Harris) decides to take the... [More]
Directed By: Chris Columbus

#8

The Color Purple (1985)
81%

#8
Adjusted Score: 82400%
Critics Consensus: It might have been better served by a filmmaker with a deeper connection to the source material, but The Color Purple remains a worthy, well-acted adaptation of Alice Walker's classic novel.
Synopsis: An epic tale spanning forty years in the life of Celie (Whoopi Goldberg), an African-American woman living in the South... [More]
Directed By: Steven Spielberg

#7
#7
Adjusted Score: 82228%
Critics Consensus: A classic tearjerker, Terms of Endearment isn't shy about reaching for the heartstrings -- but is so well-acted and smartly scripted that it's almost impossible to resist.
Synopsis: Widow Aurora Greenway (Shirley MacLaine) and her daughter, Emma (Debra Winger), have a strong bond, but Emma marries teacher Flap... [More]
Directed By: James L. Brooks

#6

Toy Story 3 (2010)
98%

#6
Adjusted Score: 112785%
Critics Consensus: Deftly blending comedy, adventure, and honest emotion, Toy Story 3 is a rare second sequel that really works.
Synopsis: With their beloved Andy preparing to leave for college, Woody (Tom Hanks), Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen), Jessie (Joan Cusack), and... [More]
Directed By: Lee Unkrich

#5
#5
Adjusted Score: 89615%
Critics Consensus: Wise, funny, and heartbreaking without resorting to exploitation, The Fault In Our Stars does right by its bestselling source material.
Synopsis: Hazel Grace Lancaster (Shailene Woodley), a 16-year-old cancer patient, meets and falls in love with Gus Waters (Ansel Elgort), a... [More]
Directed By: Josh Boone

#1

Wendy and Lucy (2008)
85%

#1
Adjusted Score: 92420%
Critics Consensus: Michelle Williams gives a heartbreaking performance in Wendy and Lucy, a timely portrait of loneliness and struggle.
Synopsis: Wendy (Michelle Williams), a near-penniless drifter, is traveling to Alaska in search of work, and her only companion is her... [More]
Directed By: Kelly Reichardt

#4

My Girl (1991)
50%

#4
Adjusted Score: 50560%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Tomboy Vada Sultenfuss (Anna Chlumsky) has good reason to be morbid: her mother died giving birth to her, and her... [More]
Directed By: Howard Zieff

#3

Selena (1997)
67%

#3
Adjusted Score: 68834%
Critics Consensus: Selena occasionally struggles to tell its subject's story with depth or perspective, but those flaws are rendered largely irrelevant by Jennifer Lopez in the title role.
Synopsis: In this biographical drama, Selena Quintanilla (Jennifer Lopez) is born into a musical Mexican-American family in Texas. Her father, Abraham... [More]
Directed By: Gregory Nava

#2

Up (2009)
98%

#2
Adjusted Score: 109599%
Critics Consensus: An exciting, funny, and poignant adventure, Up offers an impeccably crafted story told with wit and arranged with depth, as well as yet another visual Pixar treat.
Synopsis: Carl Fredricksen (Ed Asner), a 78-year-old balloon salesman, is about to fulfill a lifelong dream. Tying thousands of balloons to... [More]
Directed By: Pete Docter, Bob Peterson

#1
Adjusted Score: 110789%
Critics Consensus: Playing as both an exciting sci-fi adventure and a remarkable portrait of childhood, Steven Spielberg's touching tale of a homesick alien remains a piece of movie magic for young and old.
Synopsis: After a gentle alien becomes stranded on Earth, the being is discovered and befriended by a young boy named Elliott... [More]
Directed By: Steven Spielberg

#1
Adjusted Score: 89503%
Critics Consensus: Beautifully scripted and perfectly cast, Me & Earl & the Dying Girl is a coming-of-age movie with uncommon charm and insight.
Synopsis: An awkward high-school senior (Thomas Mann) and a gravely ill classmate (Olivia Cooke) surprise themselves by becoming inseparable friends.... [More]
Directed By: Alfonso Gomez-Rejon

#1

Stories We Tell (2012)
94%

#1
Adjusted Score: 98582%
Critics Consensus: In Stories We Tell, Sarah Polley plays with the documentary format to explore the nature of memory and storytelling, crafting a thoughtful, compelling narrative that unfolds like a mystery.
Synopsis: Through a series of revealing interviews, filmmaker Sarah Polley investigates the truth about her family history.... [More]
Directed By: Sarah Polley

#1

Old Yeller (1957)
100%

#1
Adjusted Score: 101989%
Critics Consensus: Old Yeller is an exemplary coming of age tale, packing an emotional wallop through smart pacing and a keen understanding of the elemental bonding between humanity and their furry best friends.
Synopsis: While Jim Coates (Fess Parker) is off on a cattle drive, his wife, Katie (Dorothy McGuire), and sons, Travis (Tommy... [More]
Directed By: Robert Stevenson

#1

Marley & Me (2008)
63%

#1
Adjusted Score: 68332%
Critics Consensus: Pet owners should love it, but Marley and Me is only sporadically successful in wringing drama and laughs from its scenario.
Synopsis: Newlyweds John and Jenny Grogan (Owen Wilson, Jennifer Aniston) leave behind snowy Michigan and move to Florida, where they buy... [More]
Directed By: David Frankel

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 28943%
Critics Consensus: Though wholesome, the Mandy Moore vehicle A Walk to Remember is also bland and oppressively syrupy.
Synopsis: Set in North Carolina, "A Walk To Remember" follows the rite of passage of a jaded, aimless high school senior... [More]
Directed By: Adam Shankman


BECAUSE THE MOVIE WILL INSTANTLY PUT YOU IN A BETTER MOOD…

#13

Moonrise Kingdom (2012)
93%

#13
Adjusted Score: 104518%
Critics Consensus: Warm, whimsical, and poignant, the immaculately framed and beautifully acted Moonrise Kingdom presents writer/director Wes Anderson at his idiosyncratic best.
Synopsis: The year is 1965, and the residents of New Penzance, an island off the coast of New England, inhabit a... [More]
Directed By: Wes Anderson

#12

Groundhog Day (1993)
97%

#12
Adjusted Score: 104067%
Critics Consensus: Smart, sweet, and inventive, Groundhog Day highlights Murray's dramatic gifts while still leaving plenty of room for laughs.
Synopsis: Phil (Bill Murray), a weatherman, is out to cover the annual emergence of the groundhog from its hole. He gets... [More]
Directed By: Harold Ramis

#11

The Goonies (1985)
77%

#11
Adjusted Score: 80849%
Critics Consensus: The Goonies is an energetic, sometimes noisy mix of Spielbergian sentiment and funhouse tricks that will appeal to kids and nostalgic adults alike.
Synopsis: When two brothers find out they might lose their house they are desperate to find a way to keep their... [More]
Directed By: Richard Donner

#10
#10
Adjusted Score: 109747%
Critics Consensus: Clever, incisive, and funny, Singin' in the Rain is a masterpiece of the classical Hollywood musical.
Synopsis: A spoof of the turmoil that afflicted the movie industry in the late 1920s when movies went from silent to... [More]
Directed By: Stanley Donen, Gene Kelly

#9

Amélie (2001)
89%

#9
Adjusted Score: 95567%
Critics Consensus: The feel-good Amelie is a lively, fanciful charmer, showcasing Audrey Tautou as its delightful heroine.
Synopsis: "Amélie" is a fanciful comedy about a young woman who discretely orchestrates the lives of the people around her, creating... [More]
Directed By: Jean-Pierre Jeunet

#8
#8
Adjusted Score: 104033%
Critics Consensus: A delightfully postmodern fairy tale, The Princess Bride is a deft, intelligent mix of swashbuckling, romance, and comedy that takes an age-old damsel-in-distress story and makes it fresh.
Synopsis: A fairy tale adventure about a beautiful young woman and her one true love. He must find her after a... [More]
Directed By: Rob Reiner

#7

The Birdcage (1996)
81%

#7
Adjusted Score: 84022%
Critics Consensus: Mike Nichols wrangles agreeably amusing performances from Robin Williams and Nathan Lane in this fun, if not quite essential, remake of the French comedy La Cage aux Folles.
Synopsis: In this remake of the classic French farce "La Cage aux Folles," engaged couple Val Goldman (Dan Futterman) and Barbara... [More]
Directed By: Mike Nichols

#6
#6
Adjusted Score: 88021%
Critics Consensus: Matthew Broderick charms in Ferris Bueller's Day Off, a light and irrepressibly fun movie about being young and having fun.
Synopsis: Ferris Bueller (Matthew Broderick) has an uncanny skill at cutting classes and getting away with it. Intending to make one... [More]
Directed By: John Hughes

#5
#5
Adjusted Score: 86333%
Critics Consensus: Though there was controversy over the choice of casting, Zellweger's Bridget Jones is a sympathetic, likable, funny character, giving this romantic comedy a lot of charm.
Synopsis: At the start of the New Year, 32-year-old Bridget (Renée Zellweger) decides it's time to take control of her life... [More]
Directed By: Sharon Maguire

#4

Clueless (1995)
81%

#4
Adjusted Score: 89305%
Critics Consensus: A funny and clever reshaping of Emma, Clueless offers a soft satire that pokes as much fun at teen films as it does at the Beverly Hills glitterati.
Synopsis: Shallow, rich and socially successful Cher (Alicia Silverstone) is at the top of her Beverly Hills high school's pecking scale.... [More]
Directed By: Amy Heckerling

#3

The Intouchables (2011)
75%

#3
Adjusted Score: 79896%
Critics Consensus: It handles its potentially prickly subject matter with kid gloves, but Intouchables gets by thanks to its strong cast and some remarkably sensitive direction.
Synopsis: An unlikely friendship develops between a wealthy quadriplegic (François Cluzet) and his caretaker (Omar Sy), just released from prison.... [More]

#2

Tommy Boy (1995)
42%

#2
Adjusted Score: 43339%
Critics Consensus: Though it benefits from the comic charms of its two leads, Tommy Boy too often feels like a familiar sketch stretched thin.
Synopsis: After his beloved father (Brian Dennehy) dies, dimwitted Tommy Callahan (Chris Farley) inherits a near-bankrupt automobile parts factory in Sandusky,... [More]
Directed By: Peter Segal

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 99436%
Critics Consensus: Little Miss Sunshine succeeds thanks to a strong ensemble cast that includes Greg Kinnear, Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Alan Arkin, and Abigail Breslin, as well as a delightfully funny script.
Synopsis: The Hoover family -- a man (Greg Kinnear), his wife (Toni Collette), an uncle (Steve Carell), a brother (Paul Dano)... [More]

#1

The Full Monty (1997)
96%

#1
Adjusted Score: 98885%
Critics Consensus: Cheeky and infectiously good-natured, The Full Monty bares its big beating heart with a sly dose of ribald comedy.
Synopsis: After losing his job at a steel factory, Gaz (Robert Carlyle) learns that his wife wants to sue him for... [More]
Directed By: Peter Cattaneo

#1

Mamma Mia! (2008)
55%

#1
Adjusted Score: 61865%
Critics Consensus: This jukebox musical is full of fluffy fun but rough singing voices and a campy tone might not make you feel like "You Can Dance" the whole 90 minutes.
Synopsis: Donna (Meryl Streep), an independent hotelier in the Greek islands, is preparing for her daughter's wedding with the help of... [More]
Directed By: Phyllida Lloyd

#1

Billy Elliot (2000)
85%

#1
Adjusted Score: 88855%
Critics Consensus: Billy Elliot is a charming movie that can evoke both laughter and tears.
Synopsis: The life of 11-year-old Billy Elliot, a coal miner's son in Northern England, is forever changed one day when he... [More]
Directed By: Stephen Daldry

#3
Adjusted Score: 55627%
Critics Consensus: Provides lots of laughs with Myers at the healm; as funny or funnier than the original.
Synopsis: In his second screen adventure, British super spy Austin Powers must return to 1969, as arch-nemesis Dr. Evil has ventured... [More]
Directed By: Jay Roach

#1

Step Brothers (2008)
55%

#1
Adjusted Score: 63191%
Critics Consensus: Step Brothers indulges in a cheerfully relentless immaturity that will quickly turn off viewers unamused by Ferrell and Reilly -- and delight those who find their antics hilarious.
Synopsis: Brennan Huff (Will Ferrell) and Dale Doback (John C. Reilly) have one thing in common: they are both lazy, unemployed... [More]
Directed By: Adam McKay

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 75954%
Critics Consensus: Eddie Murphy was in full control at this point, starkly evident in Coming to America's John Landis' coasting direction.
Synopsis: Prince Akeem (Eddie Murphy) is the prince of a wealthy African country and wants for nothing, except a wife who... [More]
Directed By: John Landis

#1

Airplane! (1980)
97%

#1
Adjusted Score: 103487%
Critics Consensus: Though unabashedly juvenile and silly, Airplane! is nevertheless an uproarious spoof comedy full of quotable lines and slapstick gags that endure to this day.
Synopsis: This spoof comedy takes shots at the slew of disaster movies that were released in the 70s. When the passengers... [More]

#1

Game Night (2018)
85%

#1
Adjusted Score: 99576%
Critics Consensus: With a talented cast turned loose on a loaded premise -- and a sharp script loaded with dark comedy and unexpected twists -- Game Night might be more fun than the real thing.
Synopsis: Max and Annie's weekly game night gets kicked up a notch when Max's brother Brooks arranges a murder mystery party... [More]

#1

Pride (2014)
92%

#1
Adjusted Score: 98186%
Critics Consensus: Earnest without being didactic and uplifting without stooping to sentimentality, Pride is a joyous crowd-pleaser that genuinely works.
Synopsis: Realizing that they share common foes in Margaret Thatcher, the police and the conservative press, London-based gays and lesbians lend... [More]
Directed By: Matthew Warchus

#1

Pitch Perfect (2012)
81%

#1
Adjusted Score: 86241%
Critics Consensus: Pitch Perfect's plot is formulaic, but the performances are excellent and the musical numbers are toe-tapping as well.
Synopsis: College student Beca (Anna Kendrick) knows she does not want to be part of a clique, but that's exactly where... [More]
Directed By: Jason Moore

#1

Hot Fuzz (2007)
91%

#1
Adjusted Score: 99761%
Critics Consensus: The brilliant minds behind Shaun of the Dead successfully take a shot at the buddy cop genre with Hot Fuzz. The result is a bitingly satiric and hugely entertaining parody.
Synopsis: As a former London constable, Nicholas Angel (Simon Pegg) finds if difficult to adapt to his new assignment in the... [More]
Directed By: Edgar Wright

#1
Adjusted Score: 43264%
Critics Consensus: Undisciplined, scatological, profoundly silly, and often utterly groan-worthy, Robin Hood: Men in Tights still has an amiable, anything-goes goofiness that has made it a cult favorite.
Synopsis: Crusading nobleman Robin of Loxley (Cary Elwes) escapes from prison in Jerusalem and returns home to find that the evil... [More]
Directed By: Mel Brooks

#1

Sing Street (2016)
95%

#1
Adjusted Score: 107232%
Critics Consensus: Sing Street is a feel-good musical with huge heart and irresistible optimism, and its charmimg cast and hummable tunes help to elevate its familiar plotting.
Synopsis: In 1985, a Dublin teenager (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) forms a rock 'n' roll band to win the heart of an aspiring... [More]
Directed By: John Carney

#1

Big (1988)
97%

#1
Adjusted Score: 103369%
Critics Consensus: Refreshingly sweet and undeniably funny, Big is a showcase for Tom Hanks, who dives into his role and infuses it with charm and surprising poignancy.
Synopsis: After a wish turns 12-year-old Josh Baskin (David Moscow) into a 30-year-old man (Tom Hanks), he heads to New York... [More]
Directed By: Penny Marshall

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 112580%
Critics Consensus: With a terrific cast and a surfeit of visual razzle dazzle, Crazy Rich Asians takes a satisfying step forward for screen representation while deftly drawing inspiration from the classic -- and still effective -- rom-com formula.
Synopsis: Rachel Chu is happy to accompany her longtime boyfriend, Nick, to his best friend's wedding in Singapore. She's also surprised... [More]
Directed By: Jon M. Chu


BECAUSE THE MOVIE’S VERY SEXY BITS WILL BE LESS AWKWARD SOLO…

#13

Magic Mike XXL (2015)
65%

#13
Adjusted Score: 74755%
Critics Consensus: Magic Mike XXL has enough narrative thrust and beefy charm to deliver another helping of well-oiled entertainment, even if this sequel isn't quite as pleasurable as its predecessor.
Synopsis: It's been three years since Mike Lane's (Channing Tatum) retirement from stripping, but the former dancer misses the excitement and... [More]
Directed By: Gregory Jacobs

#12

Basic Instinct (1992)
55%

#12
Adjusted Score: 60683%
Critics Consensus: Unevenly echoing the work of Alfred Hitchcock, Basic Instinct contains a star-making performance from Sharon Stone but is ultimately undone by its problematic, overly lurid plot.
Synopsis: The mysterious Catherine Tramell (Sharon Stone), a beautiful crime novelist, becomes a suspect when she is linked to the brutal... [More]
Directed By: Paul Verhoeven

#11
#11
Adjusted Score: 96270%
Critics Consensus: A road movie that's not only sexy, but intelligent as well.
Synopsis: The lives of Julio and Tenoch, like those of 17-year old boys everywhere, are ruled by raging hormones, intense friendships,... [More]
Directed By: Alfonso Cuarón

#10

The Dreamers (2003)
60%

#10
Adjusted Score: 66108%
Critics Consensus: Though lushly atmospheric, The Dreamers doesn't engage or provoke as much as it should.
Synopsis: In May 1968, the student riots in Paris only exacerbate the isolation felt by three youths: an American exchange student... [More]
Directed By: Bernardo Bertolucci

#9

Lust, Caution (2007)
72%

#9
Adjusted Score: 78843%
Critics Consensus: Ang Lee's Lust, Caution is a tense, sensual and beautifully-shot espionage film.
Synopsis: During World War II a secret agent (Tang Wei) must seduce, then assassinate an official (Tony Leung Chiu Wai) who... [More]
Directed By: Ang Lee

#8

Sirens (1994)
74%

#8
Adjusted Score: 75531%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: In 1930s Australia, Anglican clergyman Anthony Campion (Hugh Grant) and his prim wife, Estella (Tara Fitzgerald), are asked to visit... [More]
Directed By: John Duigan

#7

Secretary (2002)
78%

#7
Adjusted Score: 82606%
Critics Consensus: Maggie Gyllenhaal impresses in this romantic comedy with a kinky twist.
Synopsis: Lee Holloway (Maggie Gyllenhaal), a young woman with a history of severe emotional problems, is released into the care of... [More]
Directed By: Steven Shainberg

#6

Boogie Nights (1997)
93%

#6
Adjusted Score: 97831%
Critics Consensus: Grounded in strong characters, bold themes, and subtle storytelling, Boogie Nights is a groundbreaking film both for director P.T. Anderson and star Mark Wahlberg.
Synopsis: In the San Fernando Valley in 1977, teenage busboy Eddie Adams (Mark Wahlberg) gets discovered by porn director Jack Horner... [More]
Directed By: Paul Thomas Anderson

#5

Wild Things (1998)
63%

#5
Adjusted Score: 65009%
Critics Consensus: Wild Things is a delightfully salacious, flesh-exposed romp that also requires a high degree of love for trash cinema.
Synopsis: When teen debutante Kelly (Denise Richards) fails to attract the attention of her hunky guidance counselor, Sam (Matt Dillon), she... [More]
Directed By: John McNaughton

#4

Unfaithful (2002)
50%

#4
Adjusted Score: 55941%
Critics Consensus: Diane Lane shines in the role, but the movie adds nothing new to the genre and the resolution is unsatisfying.
Synopsis: Described by director Adrian Lyne ("Fatal Attraction") as "an erotic thriller about the body language of guilt." When Edward (Richard... [More]
Directed By: Adrian Lyne

#3

Bound (1996)
90%

#3
Adjusted Score: 91422%
Critics Consensus: Bound's more titillating elements attracted attention, but it's the stylish direction, solid performances, and entertaining neo-noir caper plot that make it worth a watch.
Synopsis: Sparks fly when Violet (Jennifer Tilly) sets eyes on Corky (Gina Gershon) in an elevator. Violet is the girlfriend of... [More]

#2

Swimming Pool (2003)
83%

#2
Adjusted Score: 88049%
Critics Consensus: A sensual thriller with two engaging performers demanding our undivided attention.
Synopsis: When uptight British writer Sarah Morton (Charlotte Rampling) has difficulty with her new detective novel, her publisher, John Bosload (Charles... [More]
Directed By: François Ozon

#1

Mulholland Dr. (2001)
84%

#1
Adjusted Score: 90299%
Critics Consensus: David Lynch's dreamlike and mysterious Mulholland Drive is a twisty neo-noir with an unconventional structure that features a mesmirizing performance from Naomi Watts as a woman on the dark fringes of Hollywood.
Synopsis: A dark-haired woman (Laura Elena Harring) is left amnesiac after a car crash. She wanders the streets of Los Angeles... [More]
Directed By: David Lynch

#1

Eyes Wide Shut (1999)
75%

#1
Adjusted Score: 82182%
Critics Consensus: Kubrick's intense study of the human psyche yields an impressive cinematic work.
Synopsis: After Dr. Bill Hartford's (Tom Cruise) wife, Alice (Nicole Kidman), admits to having sexual fantasies about a man she met,... [More]
Directed By: Stanley Kubrick

#1

Weekend (2011)
95%

#1
Adjusted Score: 98017%
Critics Consensus: It may be a chamber piece but Weekend's revelations on modern sexuality expand far beyond the modest setting.
Synopsis: A gay man's (Tom Cullen) weekend-long encounter with an artist (Chris New) changes his life in unexpected ways.... [More]
Directed By: Andrew Haigh

#1

Body Heat (1981)
98%

#1
Adjusted Score: 100552%
Critics Consensus: Made from classic noir ingredients and flavored with a heaping helping of steamy modern spice, Body Heat more than lives up to its evocative title.
Synopsis: Shyster lawyer Ned Racine (William Hurt) begins a passionate affair with Matty Walker (Kathleen Turner), wife of a wealthy Florida... [More]
Directed By: Lawrence Kasdan

#1

Shame (2011)
79%

#1
Adjusted Score: 87692%
Critics Consensus: Boasting stellar performances by Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan, Shame is a powerful plunge into the mania of addiction affliction.
Synopsis: Successful and handsome New Yorker Brandon (Michael Fassbender) seems to live an ordinary life, but he hides a terrible secret... [More]
Directed By: Steve McQueen

#1

Showgirls (1995)
22%

#1
Adjusted Score: 24970%
Critics Consensus: Vile, contemptible, garish, and misogynistic -- and that might just be exactly Showgirls' point.
Synopsis: Nomi (Elizabeth Berkley) arrives in Las Vegas with only a suitcase and a dream of becoming a top showgirl. She... [More]
Directed By: Paul Verhoeven

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 35596%
Critics Consensus: While creatively better endowed than its print counterpart, Fifty Shades of Grey is a less than satisfying experience on the screen.
Synopsis: When college senior Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) steps in for her sick roommate to interview prominent businessman Christian Grey (Jamie... [More]
Directed By: Sam Taylor-Johnson

#1

Fear (1996)
46%

#1
Adjusted Score: 46808%
Critics Consensus: Fear has an appealing young cast, but their efforts aren't enough to consistently distract from an increasingly overblown - and illogical - teen stalker story.
Synopsis: When 16-year-old Nicole Walker (Reese Witherspoon) meets 23-year-old David McCall (Mark Wahlberg) at a Seattle nightclub, she falls in love.... [More]
Directed By: James Foley


BECAUSE THE MOVIE’S EVEN SCARIER IN PERFECT SILENCE…

#13

The Descent (2005)
86%

#13
Adjusted Score: 93915%
Critics Consensus: Deft direction and strong performances from its all-female cast guide The Descent, a riveting, claustrophobic horror film.
Synopsis: A year after a severe emotional trauma, Sarah (Shauna Macdonald) goes to North Carolina to spend some time exploring caves... [More]
Directed By: Neil Marshall

#12

A Quiet Place (2018)
96%

#12
Adjusted Score: 118868%
Critics Consensus: A Quiet Place artfully plays on elemental fears with a ruthlessly intelligent creature feature that's as original as it is scary -- and establishes director John Krasinski as a rising talent.
Synopsis: If they hear you, they hunt you. A family must live in silence to avoid mysterious creatures that hunt by... [More]
Directed By: John Krasinski

#11
#11
Adjusted Score: 44665%
Critics Consensus: There is indeed a good amount of tension in this French slasher, but the dubbing is bad and the end twist unbelievable.
Synopsis: A beautiful young Frenchwoman, Alex (Maïwenn Le Besco), travels out to the country to visit her family and brings along... [More]
Directed By: Alexandre Aja

#10

The Strangers (2008)
48%

#10
Adjusted Score: 54443%
Critics Consensus: The Strangers has a handful of genuinely scary moments, but they're not enough to elevate the end results above standard slasher fare.
Synopsis: Kristen (Liv Tyler) and James (Scott Speedman) are expecting a relaxing weekend at a family vacation home, but their stay... [More]
Directed By: Bryan Bertino

#9

Hush (2016)
93%

#9
Adjusted Score: 95382%
Critics Consensus: Hush navigates the bloody waters of home invasion thrillers and incisive slashers for a contemporary horror puree.
Synopsis: A deaf woman is stalked by a killer in her home.... [More]
Directed By: Mike Flanagan

#8

28 Days Later (2002)
87%

#8
Adjusted Score: 94188%
Critics Consensus: Kinetically directed by Danny Boyle, 28 Days Later is both a terrifying zombie movie and a sharp political allegory.
Synopsis: A group of misguided animal rights activists free a caged chimp infected with the "Rage" virus from a medical research... [More]
Directed By: Danny Boyle

#7

Alien (1979)
98%

#7
Adjusted Score: 108924%
Critics Consensus: A modern classic, Alien blends science fiction, horror and bleak poetry into a seamless whole.
Synopsis: In deep space, the crew of the commercial starship Nostromo is awakened from their cryo-sleep capsules halfway through their journey... [More]
Directed By: Ridley Scott

#6

Dead Silence (2007)
21%

#6
Adjusted Score: 23344%
Critics Consensus: More tasteful than recent slasher flicks, but Dead Silence is undone by boring characters, bland dialogue, and an unnecessary and obvious twist ending.
Synopsis: After his wife meets a grisly end, Jamie Ashen (Ryan Kwanten) returns to their creepy hometown of Ravens Fair to... [More]
Directed By: James Wan

#5
#5
Adjusted Score: 88602%
Critics Consensus: Though its underlying themes are familiar, House of the Devil effectively sheds the loud and gory cliches of contemporary horror to deliver a tense, slowly building throwback to the fright flicks of decades past.
Synopsis: Desperate to make some money so she can move into a new apartment, college student Samantha Hughes (Jocelin Donahue) takes... [More]
Directed By: Ti West

#1

The Others (2001)
83%

#1
Adjusted Score: 89447%
Critics Consensus: The Others is a spooky thriller that reminds us that a movie doesn't need expensive special effects to be creepy.
Synopsis: Grace (Nicole Kidman), the devoutly religious mother of Anne (Alakina Mann) and Nicholas (James Bentley), moves her family to the... [More]
Directed By: Alejandro Amenábar

#4

Don't Breathe (2016)
88%

#4
Adjusted Score: 103105%
Critics Consensus: Don't Breathe smartly twists its sturdy premise to offer a satisfyingly tense, chilling addition to the home invasion genre that's all the more effective for its simplicity.
Synopsis: Rocky (Jane Levy), Alex and Money are three Detroit thieves who get their kicks by breaking into the houses of... [More]
Directed By: Fede Alvarez

#3

The Shining (1980)
85%

#3
Adjusted Score: 93702%
Critics Consensus: Though it deviates from Stephen King's novel, Stanley Kubrick's The Shining is a chilling, often baroque journey into madness -- exemplified by an unforgettable turn from Jack Nicholson.
Synopsis: Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson) becomes winter caretaker at the isolated Overlook Hotel in Colorado, hoping to cure his writer's block.... [More]
Directed By: Stanley Kubrick

#2

Wait Until Dark (1967)
96%

#2
Adjusted Score: 96529%
Critics Consensus: Nail-bitingly tense and brilliantly acted, Wait Until Dark is a compact thriller that makes the most of its fiendishly clever premise.
Synopsis: After a flight back home, Sam Hendrix (Efrem Zimbalist Jr.) returns with a doll he innocently acquired along the way.... [More]
Directed By: Terence Young

#1

The Conjuring (2013)
86%

#1
Adjusted Score: 93985%
Critics Consensus: Well-crafted and gleefully creepy, The Conjuring ratchets up dread through a series of effective old-school scares.
Synopsis: In 1970, paranormal investigators and demonologists Lorraine (Vera Farmiga) and Ed (Patrick Wilson) Warren are summoned to the home of... [More]
Directed By: James Wan

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 41730%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A retired police detective (Charles Durning) hunts a deranged British seaman out to re-create a baby sitter's (Carol Kane) horror.... [More]
Directed By: Fred Walton

#1

Silent House (2011)
43%

#1
Adjusted Score: 46809%
Critics Consensus: Silent House is more technically proficient and ambitious than most fright-fests, but it also suffers from a disappointing payoff.
Synopsis: Sarah (Elizabeth Olsen) is working with her father (Adam Trese) and uncle (Eric Sheffer Stevens) to renovate an old family... [More]
Directed By: Chris Kentis, Laura Lau

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 106177%
Critics Consensus: It Comes at Night makes lethally effective use of its bare-bones trappings while proving once again that what's left unseen can be just as horrifying as anything on the screen.
Synopsis: After a mysterious apocalypse leaves the world with few survivors, two families are forced to share a home in an... [More]
Directed By: Trey Edward Shults

#1

The Orphanage (2007)
87%

#1
Adjusted Score: 95246%
Critics Consensus: Deeply unnerving and surprisingly poignant, The Orphanage is an atmospheric, beautifully crafted haunted house horror film that earns scares with a minimum of blood.
Synopsis: Laura (Belén Rueda) has happy memories of her childhood in an orphanage. She convinces her husband to buy the place... [More]
Directed By: J.A. Bayona


Thumbnail image: Everett Collection, Paramount Pictures, Focus Features

Warm up your electrified fooling machine: April 1st is here! Once you’re done putting ice buckets atop doors, gluing your co-workers’ stuff to their desks, and faking your death in a car explosion and then disappearing for years afterwards, come check out this week’s gallery of the 24 biggest, greatest fools from movie history!

One’s a deadly MI6 agent. The other’s a football hooligan with a mod Lloyd Christmas haircut. Together, they’re The Brothers Grimsby, opening Friday and inspiring this week’s 24 Frames gallery: the best and worst movie brothers!

Christmas is just around the corner and you know what that means: holiday mirth, exchanging gifts, eating foods you wouldn’t touch at any other time in the year, and, yes, ugly sweaters!  The holiday tradition inspires this week’s 24 Frames gallery, which looks at some of the most compelling knitted monstrosities from film and TV history.

In the odd chance that you happened to be watching Mexican telenovelas sometime in the last five or six years, you may have locked eyes upon Genesis Rodriguez, a young actress who was a regular cast member on several shows before moving to Los Angeles for an arc on Entourage. You’re also likely to enjoy her performance as Will Ferrell’s absurdly radiant paramour in this week’s Casa de mi Padre, a movie that riffs heavily on the telenovelas of Rodriguez’s past. The actress’ training in those deadly serious, unintentionally cheesy melodramas proved a perfect fit for the film, which calls for a steely straight face while delivering ripe dialogue and acting against kitsch sets — not to mention Ferrell’s weirdly intoned Spanish.

We sat down with Rodriguez for a chat last week, in which she reflected on working with Ferrell and his intentions behind playing a Mexican. Plus, she talked a little about working with Arnold Schwarzenegger in the forthcoming Last Stand. First, though — before we ran out of time — she ran through her all-time five favorite comedies…

Step Brothers (Adam McKay; 2008; 55% Tomatometer)



It’s such a tough question. It could be five favorite comedies?

It can be. If you insist.

Okay. Well, Step Brothers, because it’s an innocent, funny movie and Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly just kill me. I just die of laughter.

Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (Adam McKay, 2004; 66% Tomatometer)



I’m sorry, I’m gonna go there — Anchorman is another one. [Laughs] Sorry. It’s just genius. That type of humor is just genius.

It is genius, but… you do look like you’re being paid by the Ferrell corporation.

Too bad! I was a huge fan.

National Lampoon’s Vacation, European Vacation, and Christmas Vacation (Harold Ramis, Amy Heckerling, Jeremiah Chechik; 1983, 1985, 1989; 94%, 38%, 63% Tomatometers)


I was a huge fan of Chevy Chase, so I’ll have to just condense them and put Vacation, European Vacaction, and Christmas Vacation all under one.

Young Frankenstein (Mel Brooks; 1974; 94% Tomatometer)



Young Frankenstein. Mel Brooks. It’s a classic.

Zoolander (Ben Stiller; 2001; 64% Tomatometer)



I’m gonna make an obvious choice: Zoolander. And that’s that. Very funny movie.

Next, Rodriguez on how her telenovela background prepped her for Casa de mi Padre, what she thinks of Will Ferrell’s Spanish, and working with Arnold Schwarzenegger on Last Stand.

 

This was your first major feature, but you were previously acting in the kind of telenovelas it parodies — was that how you got involved?

Genesis Rodriguez: I moved out [to Los Angeles] after finishing a six-year contract. I was getting out on certain things on TV. I did a little part on Entourage. And this was like my first real film audition. It was kind of wonderful how it worked out, because what I had done was so fresh, you know — and I knew exactly what to do. Telenovelas and, you know, Mexican movies — old Mexican movies, for example — they’re so serious and they just look a little bit off and wacky. So I felt like I had to be extremely serious to make it work. And I knew I wasn’t the funny guy — Will’s the funny guy. Gael [Garcia Bernal] and Diego [Luna], obviously, they kind of blew us out of the water too.

They’re actually very funny here.

Who knew? They’re exceptional actors. They were amazing. But I was kind of like the anchor in the movie, with kind of a “real” character in all the ridiculousness. I got to play around, too, don’t get me wrong.

But being so straight makes things funny.

It does. Being so serious… in real life, when people are so serious and so intense, it kind of makes me laugh because I think, “Why are you so serious?”

Telenovelas are notoriously melodramatic. Did you find them funny when you were working in them, when you were meant to be serious?

Oh absolutely! I mean, I’ve had ridiculous situations, if you put it in the context of the characters I’ve played. A lot of them were just like, “What? I really did that? That’s totally unbelievable.” Just ridiculous plot twists. And it was also because we were two days off air, so the audience kind of controlled what they wanted to see. So one day I would hate the person, and two days later I’d just be making out with him, in just the most random emotional moment.

They’d poll the audience to see what they wanted?

Yes. Tomorrow I might be just crying the whole time. Or I’m gonna be blind. And then I come out, and I see again. [Laughs] Just weird stuff.

You were invaluable to this film, then.

[Laughs] I guess.

The director likened you to a young Lana Turner — that’s some compliment.

I don’t know what to say. He’s amazing. I can’t… that really touches me. I mean, somebody validates you like that and, honestly, these guys — if something ever really takes off and I should have a really long career, then they should take a percentage, because they’re the ones who said, “This girl.”

Don’t say that on record. When Will Ferrell’s bankrupt he’s gonna come after your money.

He should! He totally should have a percentage of Genesis Rodriguez. [Laughs]

 

Tell me what it was like working with him. He’s not a native Spanish speaker, so did you guys play tricks on him?

Well Diego and Gael improvised a lot, and sometimes you would just see like a blank stare [laughs], so you did not know what was going on — with the director as well. Diego and Gael just really went for it, just improvised.

Did much of that end up on film?

Yeah, a lot of it. I wouldn’t say all of it because it was written out for us, the dialogue; it was just so well done — so ridiculous. But they added so much to their characters, with little details. That’s how they improvised. To see Will speaking Spanish, it was pretty incredible for me because he’s honoring our culture — and the fact that he wasn’t playing the American guy trying to speak Spanish. He wanted to be as authentic as possible. He wanted to be Mexican. And he did. He learned the cadence of how the Mexican accent is, and that’s what I find so surprising, because that’s not something that you learn in a month. It really isn’t. That tone and just the sing-songiness is just really impressive. And this is coming from a Cuban-Venezuelan who has another accent and has to sometimes have a Mexican accent in other things.

So you could tell whether his accent was really bad or not.

I could tell. And I know from experience how hard it is to grab that intonation. It was just ridiculous sometimes, the intensity in Will’s eyes — just the intensity mixed with the Mexican Spanish. I couldn’t believe what I was watching.

He was kind of immersed in that character.

Yeah, he was awesome, He really was.

The way I saw it, he wasn’t making fun of these movies — it was more of a gentle homage.

Absolutely — that’s how I saw it.

He really dedicated himself.

He did. He was so worried. He was so worried about his Spanish, and his authenticity. And I think he really did it. He really did it, but like you said, for an homage. I mean, we know what telenovelas are: I come from them, I used to watch them. I love them, you know. But he just made it incredible that he shone a light on it. It’s wonderful, for our culture, that they’re just doing this. And it’s Will, you know — that’s one guy that can just do this and bring his type of humor into another language. It’s him.

What was your favorite part of the shoot?

I mean every part was incredible, to work with him, but there’s so many epic scenes — it’s so passionate and so over the top. One of my favorite moments was when he was trying to get me on a horse and he offers me, you know, a hand. We didn’t plan any of that out. I just hung over the horse and the horse decides he wants to participate in the scene — and this is not a part of the movie — but he just starts walking off. And nobody yells “cut” so I didn’t get off of it, I just dangled there like a dead body for a very long time. Will left the scene and there was just me slowly getting off it. I was like, “Is anybody gonna yell ‘cut’ out here, because what if this guy takes off?” [Laughs]

Do you have any acting inspirations? Apart from Lana Turner, of course, to whom you’re now heiress.

Oh that is too much! [Laughs] Let’s keep it more down to earth, please. I just hope to do more movies that continue to entertain people, although I would love a super-challenging and thought-provoking movie…

But you’re so good at comedy.

I love it. I just love it. It’s something that I’ve never done before and I never thought that I could do. I have acted a fool for, like, 12 hours and I wish I could pay someone to have me continue doing it. It’s the best job ever.

You’ve got Jee-woon Kim’s Last Stand coming up, with Arnold Schwarzenegger. Where are you at with that? I assume you’re not acting the fool in it.

[Laughs] I just finished it. We just finished at the end of January. I can’t say much about my character but I can tell you about the movie. It’s exactly what you’d expect of an Arnold comeback film. It’s Arnold doing what he does.

Did you get to trade any one-liners with him?

I don’t personally because he’s a cop and I’m an FBI agent, so we have two storylines, but what I did see — and I was there the days of [his shooting] — there’s a lot of chase sequences and what not. You really appreciate a different side of Arnold. You can see the seasoned side, and you can see a vulnerability and a humanity to him; as opposed to, you know, this other person, this action god-like thing who was Conan and Terminator and all these epic characters that weren’t, you know, real. This is real. This is real Arnold. This is him.

Is he enjoying being back at work?

He was wonderful. And it was wonderful to have him back. I’m such a super fan. It’s crazy.


Casa de mi Padre is in theaters now.

 

Not since Charlton Heston played a Latino drug officer in Touch of Evil has a giant of American cinema so, ahem, convincingly inhabited a Mexican on screen like Will Ferrell in this week’s Casa de mi Padre. Making his Spanish-language debut, Ferrell plays slow-witted black-sheep-of-the-clan Armando Alvarez, whose swarthy brother Raul (Diego Luna) is taking the family into the drug trade against the nefarious La Onza (Gael García Bernal). Meanwhile, Raul’s fiance, the beautiful and tragic Sonia (Genesis Rodriguez), has fallen for Armando, a wedding turns into a hyperreal bloodbath, and a mystical white panther stalks the patently fake jungle sets dispensing oracle wisdom. The movie is an affectionate satire of the unintentionally comic Mexican telenovelas, with a heavy dose of bad Spaghetti Westerns, overly sincere performances, and even a touch of Jodorowsky strangeness. We sat down with the star recently for a chat about the film…


This movie has everything: action, romance, surrealism, panthers…

Will Ferrell: [Laughs] Yeah.

As I understand, you’d always wanted to do a Spanish-language movie. At what point did it become this one?

You know, I had the general idea and then it really was Andrew Steele, the writer, who just kind of created the whole story, the whole setting. When we talked about it I was kind of like, “Andrew, I don’t know what exactly but I’m sure it’s gotta be some epic story, probably with a love element and some sort of melodramatic tale.” But yeah, he kind of turned it into this story and added the narco traficante element to it. Then when we added Matt Piedmont, the director, to it, he kind of added the surrealism element with the way he shot things and finding and using old lenses at Panavision to shoot on, shooting it anamorphic and not processing the film and stuff like that. It just kind of kept getting… the simple structure was built and then more and more layers of schlack were added.

That being the technical term.

Yeah. [Laughs]

Were you, like Matt, a fan of the telenovelas?

I had seen telenovelas just, you know, cruising around the TV and had always thought to myself, “God, these things are kind of fascinating.” They were so over the top and had this weird style to them; they were very bizarre. So that was where the initial concept came from, but then Andrew, those guys, they know their cinema really well and they were kind of connoisseurs of bad Mexican cinema from 1969 through the middle ’70s — you know, a lot of these Spaghetti Westerns with the jump cuts and the continuity issues and things like that.

So we’re not talking about Sergio Leone-level stuff here.

Noooooo.

More like the kind of movies you’d accidentally see on late night TV…

Late at night on TV, poorly dubbed in English. [Laughs] So they started talking about what if we added those elements, and I thought — that’s amazing. But I can’t say that I knew that world so well. Between Matt and Andrew, they really gave it the style that it has.

When you committed to do this, had you made the decision to speak fluently in Spanish?

Yeah.

Genesis Rodriguez was very full of praise for your… cadence.

[Laughs] That’s very nice.

She’s the expert, having been in telenovelas.

She would know. She’s a pro. And Diego [Luna], too, actually did telenovelas ’til he was 19, I guess, which I didn’t know. We didn’t realize that he saw it as an opportunity to make fun of what he had done as an actor.

He didn’t think you were serious about the movie, right? Like it was some kind of practical joke?

Yeah. He even sat down with us — we all had drinks in Venice and he was like, “Are you really gonna learn Spanish?” And I’m like, “Yeah.” Then he said, “Alright, well… I guess I’m in.” [Laughs] But when I had the initial idea I always thought, “If I’m gonna do this, the joke won’t be that I speak Spanish poorly.” The joke has to be that you’re sitting in the theater, watching it, and I come up on screen speaking Spanish and a couple of things go through your head, like: “How long is this gonna last? Is it gonna last the whole movie? There’s no way… oh my god, I think it is.” And the third point being, “And he sounds pretty good, I think.” [Laughs]

‘Cause that gag would’ve gotten old in about two minutes.

Exactly. That’s a sketch. So I knew that if I was gonna do this I had to at least sound as authentic as I could. That’s why he hedged our bet a little bit with the family, with the father and Diego commenting at times, “You speak so weird” and “You’re not the smart one.”, Also, we knew that for native speakers I would sound decent, but a little off. So I tirelessly worked with a translator for about six weeks out from shooting, and then every day, on the set, we’d drive together and go over the lines, and then drive home together and go over the next day’s lines.

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Does Matt speak Spanish?

No. Matt doesn’t speak Spanish, Andrew doesn’t speak Spanish, so… [Laughs]

That must have been an interesting set. Genesis was saying that Gael and Diego would sometimes ad-lib and you’d be left with a kind of blank stare…

[Laughs]

How did that work? I mean, you obviously have your particular comedic style, so how did that mesh when you’re speaking Spanish? Did that mean you had to find a different style of comedy when you were doing it?

You know it was almost, in a weird way, like being a silent film actor — [laughs] — or what I imagine that would have been like, in the sense that I knew that it would be all I could do just to memorize what my lines were and get them down with authenticity and emphasis in the right places, so it sounded like I was speaking the right way. That would be hard enough. I just knew that it was not like I was gonna get all that down and then start fluently improvising. So I just kind of found moments: in reactions, non-verbal, physical things — like the moment where I help Genesis up on the horse, and the moment before that where I’m talking with Efren [Ramirez] and Adrian [Martinez] and I’m rolling the cigarette and we’re laughing. I couldn’t get the cigarette to work at all, everything was just spilling out and I just went with it.

Which became a running gag.

Yep. We just kept running with it, and finding these through lines; they were the things that were more improvised, as opposed to actual dialogue.

Will we ever see that missing reel of you wrestling with the white panther?

[Laughs] No. I don’t think there’ll be any wrestling. We always had that — the lost footage. The other character, the other kind of personality in the movie, is that it’s just bad. It’s a bad movie, so we wanted… we just knew we didn’t have the time or resources to choreograph a scene with a puppet panther.

Where did you find these puppets? There’s one taxidermy that looks like he was found on the side of a road.

The one that moves actually came from Henson.

The animatronic one?

Yeah. Those people were nice enough to want to be involved for very little money. [Laughs] And then Piedmont, he loves his set design and production design and finding strange taxidermy and things like that. Kevin Kavanaugh, the production designer, who’s actually an old friend from growing up in Orange County, he was so scrappy and innovative and he came up with a lot of that stuff. That set that Kevin built, of the lake, that’s one of the funniest moments to me — where Genesis is like, “It’s the most beautiful place I’ve ever seen” and it just looks terrible.

It’s like a sound stage version of a sound stage set.

[Laughs] Right, right. That’s what I like about this movie.

But I like that it’s mixed with some quite impressive cinematography elsewhere.

Yes. And at times, the movie looks big and expensive, it’s crazy.

Since they’ve done several films together, did Gael and Diego come as some kind of package deal?

[Laughs] Yeah. I mean they’re good friends. I think they just talked to each other and were like, “Hey, we have such a history together on screen — let’s do this together and kind of make fun of that.” I think there were so many meta opportunities for them they were just, “Let’s do this.” [Laughs]

I get the impression that those guys are amusing, but I was surprised at how funny they really are in this.

You know, it’s funny: they’re pretty impressive guys, because they’re really funny in English — they’re sarcastic, you know; just when we talk in English they have a great sense of humor. It doesn’t surprise me, though, that they were funny, because they’re so committed. I always found that to be the case when I was on Saturday Night Live — the best hosts, a lot of the time, were the straight dramatic actors, ’cause they would just commit to scenes wholeheartedly without saying “Give me a funny line here.” They knew that if they just trusted the context it would play funny, and sure enough those were some of the funnier shows. These guys, they instinctively knew that as well.

Genesis plays it very straight, too — which makes her funny.

Yeah, I think so too. That scene on the horseback where she talks about her upbringing and living on the streets and everything like that, it’s just delivered so dramatically that it makes me laugh.

I read some talk that you and Adam [McKay] are working on a sequel to Step Brothers. Will that be your next project together, with him directing?

Yeah, I think so. In fact, I’m calling him right now, after this interview, to let him know that you’re the third or fourth journalist who’s said “Step Brothers 2 — come on.”

John C. Reilly will be back, I’m assuming.

Oh, absolutely. We already have a story beated out — it’s just a question of whether we can write it in time and get it ready for a certain slot in the fall, and that sort of thing.

I think seeing you in two together in the Tim and Eric movie whet the appetite again.

I know! John’s the best and I love working with him. We’re dying to do something again together.


Casa de mi Padre is in theaters this week.


More of this summer’s films come to DVD this week, led by the extras-packed fantasy The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian. If bullet-bending is more your style, you’ll want to pick up Timur Bekmambetov’s super-charged actioner, Wanted; for raunchy, man-child laughs check out Will Ferrell’s Step Brothers. And if your leanings are a tad more sophisticated, see the latest from the revamped Criterion Collection and a special set from the greatest cinematic romance of all time: Casablanca.

1. Wanted Limited Edition Collector’s Gift Set — 73%

If the prospect of watching the director of Russia’s impressive sci-fi films Night Watch and Day Watch make his Hollywood debut wasn’t enough to make you watch Wanted, perhaps it was the idea of seeing Angelina Jolie as a tattooed, deadly assassin; either way, Timur Bekmambetov’s bullet-bending action film exceeded expectations in theaters last summer and, accordingly, will be looking for a place on your DVD shelf this week.

Adapted from Mark Millar’s comics of the same name, Wanted follows the young, bookish Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy) as he learns from a mysterious woman named Fox (Jolie) that his father belonged to a secret society of assassins and he’s next in line to join. Packed with visually-stunning set pieces and silly-but-fun action, Wanted won over critics; Universal Home Entertainment aims to do the same with fans by offering a plethora of bonus features on its 2-Disc DVD (a cast and character guide, plus featurettes on the film’s stunts, special effects, graphic novel roots, and more) as well as picture-in-picture interviews, trivia, and extra angles on its Blu-ray release. In another unique BD-Live feature, record and share your own commentary track during key scenes from the film.

Below, watch an exclusive behind-the-scenes clip from the Wanted DVD in which the film’s visual effects team explains how they created the impressive train sequence — entirely in CG.

Next: Return to Narnia with Prince Caspian

2. The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian — 66%

The Pevensie kids get get geared up for battle in this sequel to Disney’s popular Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, although at 66 percent on the Tomatometer critics found Prince Caspian slightly less thrilling than its predecessor. With more action, a smidge of romance, and a new, dreamy hero (the Orlando Bloom-ish Ben Barnes), Prince Caspian still serves up the same level of high-class effects that distinguished this franchise from the get-go — and more importantly, the folks who put together this DVD release have collected tons of behind-the-scenes goodies for fans.

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian arrives this week on DVD in one of the most complete, fan-pleasing packages of the year; pick up the three-disc release for a commentary track by director Andrew Adamson and his young cast, bloopers, deleted scenes, and a host of featurettes on topics like the sets, production, concept art, and CGI-enhanced animals of Narnia. A digital copy of the film is also included.

Meanwhile, Blu-ray owners will find that Disney has put the format’s capabilities to good use, resulting in a truly immersive experience. In addition to all of the above standard edition features, the Blu-ray title includes BD-Live functionality and the specially-designed “Circle-Vision,” an interactive tour of the Prince Caspian sets with trivia, behind-the-scenes video, and more to be discovered.

Next: Will Ferrell’s Step Brothers shenanigans

3. Step Brothers — 54%

Will Ferrell + John C. Reilly = Comic gold, right? According to the Tomatometer, maybe not. With a theoretically hilarious premise, Step Brothers could have been another instant Ferrell classic, a la Ron Burgundy; instead, it fell a few shades below fresh.

In Step Brothers, two immature, overindulged man-children (Ferrell and Reilly) are forced to room together when their parents marry; their initial hatred for each other leads naturally to shenanigans, until a family crisis forces them to band together. Upon its theatrical release, at least one pair of prosthetic genitals made a brief appearance. We recommend picking up the 2-disc Unrated DVD for even raunchier offerings, a music video entitled “Boats ‘n Hoes,” making-of featurettes, deleted scenes, and a commentary track by Ferrell, Reilly, director Adam McKay, and NBA star-cum-filmmaker Baron Davis. Go Boom Dizzle.

Next: The X-Files: I Want(ed) To Believe

4. The X-Files: I Want To Believe — 32%

Let’s just call it The X-Files: I Want(ed) to Believe. The long-awaited return of FBI agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully had X-Files fans excited, agitated, and — most importantly — hopeful that the once-great franchise could be revived after nine seasons on the air and one decent 1998 feature film. Sadly, those hopes went the way of the Chupacabra, and the result was a standalone, non legacy film that more closely resembled a Sci Fi Channel creature feature than any episode of the X-Files. The Single-Disc DVD contains special features only a fan will love, including concept art, a commentary track, comments on “green” film production, and for some reason, a music video by co-star and rapper Xzibit.

Next: Sam Fuller’s White Dog and the new and improved Criterion Collection

5. Criterion Collection: White Dog – 83%

Director Sam Fuller (The Naked Kiss) was no stranger to controversy; this week, the folks at the Criterion Collection release one of the most controversial films of his career. Adapted loosely from a nonfiction book by French writer Romain Gary based on an experience he shared with his then-wife, actress Jean Seberg, White Dog explores the nature and reality of American race relations with a story of a young woman (Kristy McNichol) who takes in a stray dog that’s already been well trained — trained to attack black people, that is. An animal trainer (Paul Winfield) attempts to re-train the dog as a personal challenge, with dangerous results.

The film, completed in 1981, was shelved by Paramount Pictures on the advice of the NAACP and has never been officially released on home video until now. In grand Criterion fashion, a host of hard-to-find extras accompany the newly-restored film, including production photos, video interviews with producer Jon Davison, co-writer Curtis Hanson, and Fuller’s widow Christa Lang-Fuller, essays by critics J. Hoberman and Armond White, and a “rare 1982 interview in which Fuller interviews the canine star of the film.”

And while we’re on the subject, check out the new and improved Criterion website, where you can read Hoberman’s White Dog essay and join the Beta version of The Auteurs, a new “online movie theater” and social networking site.

Next: A kinder, gentler Metalocalypse: Season Two

6. Metalocalypse: Season Two

Season Two of Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim staple Metalocalypse comes to DVD this week, with all 18 episodes of metal-rocking goodness included. Watch as Skwisgaar, William Murderface, Nathan Explosion, Pickles the Drummer and Toki Wartooth continue their streak of world domination as the world’s most powerful and violent metal band, designing their own clothing line, experimenting with Amazonian hallucinogens, and encountering more rampant death and destruction as they attempt to record their new studio album.

Next: The perfect movie lover’s holiday gift: Casablanca The Ultimate Collector’s Edition

7. Casablanca: Ultimate Collector’s Edition — 98%

One of the greatest films ever made is re-released this week in an Ultimate Collector’s Edition perfect for your favorite movie lover this holiday season: Casablanca. A classic tale for movie lovers (and lovers of all kinds), the 1942 war drama took home Oscars for Best Director, Best Screenplay, and Best Picture and comes housed in a beautiful box that packs in not only movie memorabilia but collectible items and special features related to the Golden Era of Hollywood.

In addition to production-related extras like outtakes, deleted scenes, and galleries, the set includes an audio commentary by Roger Ebert and an introduction by Lauren Bacall and her 1988 TCM tribute to her late husband, Casablanca star Humphrey Bogart — and that’s only the tip of the iceberg. An audio accompaniment includes alternate takes of the film’s most iconic songs, including “As Time Goes By,” while the set’s many collectible items include a replica of Victor Lazlo’s Letter of Transit, internal studio memos, and branded luggage tags.

Next: The wild and crazy fourth season of Saturday Night Live

8. Saturday Night Live: The Complete Fourth Season

Relive the magical early days of Saturday Night Live with Season Four, out this week on DVD. The 1978-1979 season includes the last regular appearances of cast members John Belushi and Dan Akroyd, with plenty of laughs from the likes of Gilda Radner and Bill Murray and the debut of Father Guido Sarducci. Also witness the comic chops of special hosts Milton Berle, Kate Jackson, Monty Python’s Michael Palin, Carrie Fisher, Walter Matthau, Steve Martin, Gary Busey and Margot Kidder, with musical guests like Devo, The Rolling Stones, The Grateful Dead, Van Morrison, Kate Bush, and the Talking Heads.

Until next week, happy renting!

So the big movies out this week are Vin Diesel-powered Babylon A.D., yet another Judd Apatow-produced comedy about immature losers – Step Brothers with Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly – and the 90s coming-of-age teen drama The Wackness, starring a bong-chugging, Olsen twin-snogging knight of the realm, Sir Ben Kingsley. What did the UK critics have to say?

Denounced by its director, the Vin Diesel sci-fi action flick Babylon A.D. flops into the cinema with UK critics mirroring the US critics’ response, pretty much universally denouncing it for its indecipherable plot, tacked on action sequences, and wholesale shameless plundering of sci-fi flicks Children of Men and Blade Runner. With the Tomatometer tallying the UK response, Babylon A.D. has shot from a pathetic 0% to a measly 7%. When one of the only positive review reads, “It’s utter codswallop, yet enjoyable if you unplug your brain.” (The Times), you know you’ve got a stinker on your hands.

Will Ferrell teams up with John C. Reilly again, and with their last effort Talledega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby garnering a respectable 73% on the Tomatometer, the standards are set high, but can they repeat their success with Step Brothers? It’s had a mixed response from the UK scribes, with the general consensus being that if you like the relentless, absurd and puerile shtick peddled by Farrell and Reilly in Anchorman, Talledega Nights and Semi-Pro, then you’ll fall for Step Brothers too. On the other hand, if the sight of two grown men behaving like 12-year-olds, and sporting prosthetic testicles, seems a bit infantile to you, then steer well clear. Step Brothers is currently the black sheep of the family at 53% on the Tomatometer.

Is 1994 too recent to be considered a period piece? The critics didn’t think so with most UK critics rating The Wackness fresh, mainly for the ever-versatile Ben Kingsley’s portrayal of the bong-smoking, long haired, last hippy on the block, Dr Squires, but also for its touching and quirky story of adolescence and love in mid-90s New York. The performances save the movie from its meandering, and at times soppy, sauntering pace, and at 67% on the Tomatometer, it has just enough Dopeness to stop it truly being The Wackness.

Also worth checking out…
Badlands. Terrence Malick’s 1973 debut gets a limited re-release. This masterpiece is worth seeking out. Currently 100% on the Tomatometer.

Times and Winds. Lilting and meditative, Reha Erdem’s story of three adolescents in rural Turkey captivates with intimate details and long takes of the endless countryside. 83% on the Tomatometer.

Quote of the Week
“A sci-fi actioner that sees bald hero Vin Diesel back, stomping around the future like a small, gun-toting penis.”
Babylon A.D. – Larushka Ivan-Zadeh, Metro.

Fan frenzy for the Caped Crusader kept the unstoppable juggernaut The Dark Knight in the number one spot for the third weekend in a row in North America narrowly beating the new adventure sequel The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor which settled for the silver medal. However on a global scale, the Mummy sequel won the gold with $102M worldwide beating out the Batman flick’s $81M. Meanwhile, Kevin Costner‘s latest offering Swing Vote was met with apathy as it bombed and landed in sixth place with a dismal performance.




The Joker couldn’t stop stealing more cash. Warner Bros. enjoyed a superb hold for The Dark Knight which only dropped by 42% in its third outing to an estimated $43.8M. Averaging a still-muscular $10,267 per theater, the superhero sequel boosted its total to a jaw-dropping $394.9M in only 17 days and could now cross the $400M mark on Monday. The dark PG-13 actioner also broke into the top ten among all-time domestic blockbusters and now sits at number eight surpassing the $380.3M of 2005’s Star Wars Episode III.

The new Batpic is holding up so well that it is now virtually guaranteed to smash the $500M barrier too. The road ahead should be promising as late summer megahits that truly please audiences tend to have low declines in August. 2006’s Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest witnessed a 44% drop in its third outing at number one and its 17-day cume of $321.9M represented 76% of its eventual final. Last summer’s The Bourne Ultimatum banked $164.7M by the end of its third session which accounted for 72% of its overall cume. At a similar pace, The Dark Knight would go on to approach the neighborhood of $520M for an astonishing box office run.




Internationally, The Dark Knight grossed an estimated $37M from 51 markets to boost its stellar overseas tally to $202.5M. That gives the comic book flick a worldwide cume of $597.4M with much more fuel still in the tank as major markets like Korea, Japan, Spain, France, Russia, and Germany have yet to open.

Opening close behind in second place was Universal’s historical adventure sequel The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor which grossed an estimated $42.5M. Invading 3,760 locations, the PG-13 film averaged a solid $11,303 per site. It was the smallest debut in the franchise’s history trailing the $43.4M of 1999’s The Mummy and the $68.1M of 2001’s The Mummy Returns. At today’s ticket prices, those two figures would translate to about $60M and $85M, respectively. Dragon, which finds Brendan Fraser returning to fight ancient evil in China, was expected by many to bow at number one. Its tally was slightly lower than anticipated while Dark Knight‘s legs were stronger than expected. Jet Li, Maria Bello, and Michelle Yeoh were newcomers to this installment. Studio research showed that males made up 52% of the audience while 56% were 25 and older. Reviews were mostly negative.

Budgeted at $145M, Dragon Emperor got off to a potent start around the world where its release was strategically timed so the effects-driven actioner would hit the marketplace just a week ahead of the start of the Olympics in Beijing. Overseas, the film grossed $59.5M from 28 territories putting the global cume at a potent $102M. Universal is expecting to reach the vicinity of $375-400M in worldwide grosses. The previous two installments each collected $410-420M globally.

Will Ferrell’s latest comedy Step Brothers posted a good second weekend grossing an estimated $16.3M ranking third for the frame. Off 47%, the R-rated Sony release has banked an impressive $63M in ten days and should find its way to $100-110M.




Fans kept singing in their seats to Meryl Streep’s musical Mamma Mia! which slipped only 26% to an estimated $13.1M pushing the cume to $88M. The Universal hit is running ahead of last summer’s Hairspray and 2006’s Streep starrer The Devil Wears Prada which after their third weekends had grossed $78.9M and $83.5M, respectively. The ABBA songfest is proving to be a major crowdpleaser and a popular female-skewing alternative to the boy movies of summer.

Another film with legs, the adventure story Journey to the Center of the Earth, also held up well despite the arrival of a competing Brendan Fraser actioner. The New Line pic grossed an estimated $6.9M, off just 29%, and lifted its sum to $73.1M. Breaking the $100M mark has now become a possibility for the 3D pic.

Opening in sixth with a dismal debut was Kevin Costner’s political comedy Swing Vote with an estimated $6.3M from 2,213 venues. Averaging just $2,847 per site, the PG-13 film was backed with little marketing support and failed to excite the voting public. Costner invested over $20M of his own money to help finance the flop which Buena Vista distributed.

A pair of hits from the double century club followed. Will Smith’s Hancock dropped 37% to an estimated $5.2M and saw its cume climb to $216M for Sony. Disney’s WALL•E dipped a mere 26% to an estimated $4.7M for a $204.2M total to date. It broke through the $200M mark on Friday and should edge past Kung Fu Panda in another week or two to become 2008’s top-grossing toon.




Fox rounded out the top ten with two films that few are seeing. The sci-fi sequel The X-Files: I Want to Believe collapsed in its sophomore frame tumbling 66% to an estimated $3.4M. After ten days, the $30M pic has grossed only $17.1M and should end up with only $22-25M. The animated comedy Space Chimps slipped 37% to an estimated $2.8M for a cume of $22.1M. The X-Files team must be embarrassed by the fact that its film is being outgrossed by Space Chimps.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $145.1M which was down 8% from last year when The Bourne Ultimatum opened in the top spot with $69.3M; but up 25% from 2006 when Talladega Nights debuted at number one with $47M.

Author: Gitesh Pandya,
www.BoxOfficeGuru.com

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